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A Life's Morning

George Gissing

Book Overview: 

This is the story of a poor young lady Emily Hood who while working as a governess falls in love with Wilfrid Athel the son of her employer. They become engaged, however things do not run smoothly after a visit home to her parents and Emily has to make a heartbreaking choice.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . . inward soul,' which, if it grew to be her conviction, was greatly—perhaps wholly—dependent on the perception of external beauty. The development of beauty in the soul would mean a life of ideal purity; all her instincts pointed to such a life; her passionate motives converged on the one end of spiritual chastity.

One ever-present fear she had to strive with in her progress toward serene convictions. The misery of her parents' home haunted her, and by no effort could she expel the superstition that she had only escaped from that for a time, that its claws would surely overtake her and fix themselves again in her flesh. Analysing her own nature, she discerned, or thought she did, a lack of independent vigour; it seemed as if she were too reliant on external circumstances; she dreaded what might follow if their assistance were withdrawn. To be sure she had held her course through the countless discouragements of early years; but that, in looking ba. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Pick up most of Gissing's early books and within two chapters
you are plunged into a sometimes nightmarish world of poverty
and drama - but not this one. "A Life's Morning" explores the
world of a young governess, Emily Hood, who captures the eye
of Wilfred Athel who is recupe...more

I have read several of Gissing's books and I think this is the one that i have found most personally stirring and moving. He transcends cynicism and is prepared to sympathetically depict characters who are idealistic and unselfish, even when they become exposed to the world's harsher material rea...more

Not the powerful book that New Grub Street is. Still full of Gissing's insights into the social and economic issues of his time.

This was fantastic as is all I can say...my favs by him are NEW GRUB STREET AND THE ODD WOMEN...more